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COMPUTER USE IN DIET
i. Interview Techniques
1. If the software is well written the computer can carry on a friendly informatic dialogue with the patient.
2. Utilization of branch functions in the program design ensures that no pertinent questions are unanswered.
3. Computerized interviewing saves professional time and obtains patient responses that are not biased.
4. Patients are honest about answering embarrassing questions by a computer than by a human interviewer.
5. Programs can collect information directly from the patients, summarize the relevant nutritional date and provide a printed summary before the patient is seen.
ii. Artificial Intelligence (A1)
Computers are programmed to make decisions within a limit. This is useful in assisting nurses and dietitians in diagnosing nutritional problems, interpreting diagnostic tests, detecting new genetic inborn erros and isolating drug-nutrient problems.
iii. Nutrition care plan
Once the interview is conducted and nutritional assessment analyzed a care plan must be devised.
Computers through their ability to quickly analyze diet information, plan diets that meet the patients' specific nutrient requirements.
The computer can teach patients about the background of their medical disorder, reinforce information on their therapeutic diet, help patients apply diet requirements to their life style and make necessary diet changes.
iv. Bedside Monitoring
Computer use possibilities include collecting patient data. ECG analysis, urine output measurements and drug doses at bedside.
Micro computers provide instant access to medical records, to schedule tests and retrieve laboratory data.
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